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A Cool Student and Some Early-Semester Exercises

People in the office were quite pleasantly surprised—and so was I!— this morning, and it was because of a good student.

Yes, really.

A student in my 10:30am class showed up in the office at 10:00am to introduce himself, explain that he’d missed the first day class, and to ask about the required textbook for the course. Turned out he’d already borrowed one from another student, so I’m guessing the textbook question was just more of an excuse to come to the office and meet his teacher and let his teacher (me) know that he is a serious student who cares about having missed a class and so on.

But all in all I was quite impressed. Some other people were even more impressed, to the point of being blown away. Shawn actually said he’d never seen—or even heard of—a student doing such a thing as that at this University, so that’s a very cool thing. I have at least one student who is outright enviable.

Oh, and my morning class went well. I had students fill out their partners’ identity forms last week, and I told everyone to bring a picture to class. Well, this morning I distributed the ID forms to the students randomly, so that everyone got someone else’s card. Then I modeled the exercise, asking several students in succession where they lived until someone gave the answer on my (imaginary) ID card. When I got the right answer for the “Where do you live question?” I moved on to the next question, which was something like, “How many people are there in your family?” Finally, when I had the right student, I went to find his photograph and glue it on the paper, and put it on my desk.

The students completed it rather quickly, but some students were quicker than others, and the fastest student is now owed a coffee by her teacher. It was a pretty good first-real-class exercise.

Now, with trepidation, I am going to prepare my first lesson for the Advanced Sophomore class. The first unit is the SMILES unit. Hmmm. Ah well. We’ll see what happens, I guess.

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